10 Things to Do in Shenandoah National Park


Take A Hike

Hike a section of the Applachian Trail.

Ride the Sky

Ride the Sky on Skyline Drive on the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Gaze at the stars

Gaze at the stars from a high altitude (without light pollution).

Go Back in Time

Go back in time at Rapidan Camp, the historic summer retreat of President Herbert Hoover.


Visit Byrd Visitor Center and learn about the park’s creation.


Explore the backcountry wilderness, mountain peaks and waterfalls.

Scramble Up Ancient Summits

Climb a rock scramble.

Spend the Night

Spend the night on top of the world at Skyland or Big Meadows Lodge.

Look Up! Birds of Prey

See birds of prey in their natural habitat on mountaintops where the peregrines nest.

Gaze across Fog Oceans

See fog oceans roll in between the foothills of the mountains.

Getting Started

Enter the park on Skyline Drive and begin to wind your way through the park’s 200,000 acres. Skyline Drive offers magnificent views along the crest of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains.

To truly experience the park’s natural beauty, step into the forest by way of one of the park’s 500 miles of trails.  The famous Appalachian Trail  runs for 101 miles through the park. Other trails lead to peaks with amazing views, some to cascading waterfalls.

Many types of wildlife call Shenandoah home, including black bear, white-tailed deer, bobcat and more than 200 resident and transient bird species.

Ranger educational programs are available from spring through fall and include easy walks, challenging hikes and traditional campfire talks designed to inspire and open your eyes to the wonder and beauty of the park.

Begin your experience with a stop at the Dickey Ridge (mile 4.6) or Byrd Visitor Centers (mile 51) where ready to help plan your visit and rangers can answer your questions and help you plan your visit.

There’s so much to see!

So,  what should I do first?

We know there is a lot to see and do in the Park.  So we decided to create a seasonal top 10 lists for those who have only limited time. We asked park rangers to give us their best recommendations. Learn more about what they suggested: the Top 10 Things to Do in Shenandoah National Park.